Dr. Shaik Rahaman has been awarded a $3.539 Million/5 years NIAID R01 Award to Determine the Mechanisms Underlying Foreign Body Response

Dr. Rahaman in the lab

September 9, 2022

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) awarded $3.539 million R01 grant to Shaik O. Rahaman, an Associate Professor at the Department of Nutrition and Food Science, and his co-Investigators, to study impacts of a microRNA and calcium-permeable channel on foreign body response (FBR), a chronic inflammatory disease. This is the competing renewal of Rahaman's previous R01 grant awarded in 2017 based on its significant progress in the foreign body response field. This NIH grant is one of the largest R01 grants ever received by a faculty at the University of Maryland-College Park (UMCP).

Biomaterials and medical devices are routinely used in millions of procedures each year as prostheses in orthopedic, dental, cardiovascular, and reconstructive surgery, as scaffold for controlled drug release devices, and as matrix for cell-based therapeutics that is the next pillar of medicine. However, the implantation of biomaterials/devices into soft host tissue often leads to the development of FBR, a non-specific chronic inflammatory condition. FBR ultimately leads to structural or functional implant failure, and may cause harm to, or death of, the patient. FBR poses a vexing medical challenge because there are no therapeutic options that can mitigate the FBR today. "Improved understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the generation of FBR is the most important step for the development of novel and effective therapeutic strategies that eliminate or reduce the FBR,” said Shaik O. Rahaman, project director for this R01 grant.

This five-year award will support a multidisciplinary research team based at UMCP, and the School of Medicine at University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB). "We expect that the results of this study may provide invaluable information and insight regarding the molecular mechanisms mediating the FBR to biomaterials, which may lead to the development of a novel and effective microRNA-based therapeutic strategy for the amelioration of the poorly understood FBR to biomaterials" said Shaik O. Rahaman.

The team includes Shaik O. Rahaman from the Department of Nutrition and Food Science at UMCP; Xiaoping Zhu from Vet Med at UMCP; Xiaoming He from BioEng Department at UMCP; Srinivasa Raghavan from Chem Eng Department at UMCP; and Jonathan Bromberg from the School of Medicine at UMB. "This multi-PI project is a great example of the cutting-edge research that is possible when we combine the world-leading expertise of investigators from both the UMCP and the School of Medicine at UMB campuses", said Shaik O. Rahaman.